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Liverpool: Rodgers 'Proud Of The Fight'

Despite suffering a 2-1 defeat to rivals Manchester United on Sunday, Reds boss Brendan Rodgers was pleased with the attitude shown by his players...

Liverpool ultimately paid the price for a slow start at Old Trafford yesterday afternoon but not before the away side had gone close to snatching a point with an improved second-half showing.

In truth a draw may have been harsh on the hosts after the Reds failed to create a chance of note in the opening stages and goals from Robin van Persie and Nemanja Vidic had put them 2-0 up shortly after the interval.

However, Liverpool responded brilliantly to United's fortuitous second and pulled one back within three minutes; half-time substitute Daniel Sturride slotting home a rebound after Steven Gerrard's fierce shot was saved.

The Merseysiders then took control of the remaining half-hour and the closing period saw a number of chances come and go with Sturridge in particular missing a couple of presentable openings to further add to his impressive impact since joining from Chelsea two weeks ago.

In summarising the match, Kop boss Brendan Rodgers conceded his team had struggled in the opening 45 minutes, but he was left more than satisfied by their improved second-half endeavours.

"I thought at the end we deserved something. I am very proud of the fight in the team in the second half. We went 2-0 down and when you come here, it's always difficult. Other teams might have crumbled," said Rodgers at his post-match press conference.

"We were disappointed with the first half. I thought we were too tentative. There wasn't much in the first half, but any chances they had were through us giving the ball away.

"We then go 2-0 behind with again a disappointing goal but from that moment, I thought our efficiency in the game was much better and by the end of the 90 minutes, I thought we probably deserved something.

"It was unfortunate, but I am proud of the second-half performance."

On the subject of Sturridge, the 39-year-old Northern Irishman went on to praise the impact made by his new signing, who also scored on his debut against Mansfield Town, suggesting the striker has the ability to be a massive success at Anfield.

"This is a boy that can be a real top striker in this country. He is going to score many goals for Liverpool," boasted Rodgers.

"You've seen in half a game today and 55 minutes last week that this boy is a goalscorer and all he needed was an opportunity.

"He had one goal and was unlucky a couple of times when he tried to organise his feet inside the box and just couldn't quite get a shot off.

"He is going to be a terrific signing for us."

The result leaves Liverpool in 8th place in the Premier League standings and, with further difficult away fixtures to Arsenal and Manchester City on the horizon, everyone connected to the club will be hoping they start future games in the manner they finished this one.

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The Journalist

Writer: Gavin John Day Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Monday January 14 2013

Time: 8:00AM

Your Comments

I am very pleased that he said they were disappointed with the first half as that was quite possibly one of the worst performances I have seen. I think it was a combination of poor team selection and a lack of confidence from those put on the pitch. Add to that players just not performing it was not good at all. Give credit to United though, they pressed us very high and did not give us the chance to start our passing game. I think the mistake was not playing Henderson, I know people will criticise this but he has been improving and playing well. He has energy to get up and down the pitch which Gerrard is struggling with at the minute. 2nd half caught napping for the goal but the positives were BR changed the shape of the side and it worked. United suddenly looked the team with no time on the ball and looked fragile, just a shame we could not take one of the late half chances. I am confident we are going in the right direction but we have to start playing for a full 90 mins instead 20mins here and there.
cokehead27
Totally agree with you. Lacked positivity and tempo in the first half and although i'm not Henderson's biggest fan he has played well of late and does allow Gerrard to be more attack minded when selected alongside Lucas over Allen (who was very poor on Sunday). Hopefully the team will realise they are better than they think and go after games from the off in future.
The Bagman
 

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